Cutting sugar from your diet isn’t easy. Sugar cravings kick hard and can be difficult to ignore. Worse, sugar is lurking in a number of products that you may never suspect.
Although it might be difficult, limiting sugar is an essential component of good health. And if you’re trying to control blood sugar or battling a condition such as heart disease or diabetes, it’s essential.
Cutting sugar cold-turkey is nearly impossible. Added sugars take sweetness to a level that can’t be matched by natural foods. So, regardless of the “sweet foods” you eat, it seems like the sensation you seek is unreachable.
Artificial sweeteners can make it even harder. These products are often significantly sweeter than sugar and can make cravings even stronger.
Instead, try cutting sugar incrementally. Cut out products with added sugars that don’t taste sweet. Next, try cutting back on the amount of sugar you add to coffee or tea or the amount of soda you drink each day.
Over time, your taste buds will adjust, and naturally sweet foods such as apples, berries, and even plain yogurt can hit you with the sweetness you’re looking for.
Here’s a list of some naturally sweet foods that can help manage blood sugar, reduce the risk of illness, and add some healthful sweetness to your diet:
- Dark chocolate (in small servings)
- Chia seeds (for chia pudding)
- Sweet potato
- Plain yogurt (with nuts/nut butter/berries)
- Flavored whey protein (usually has artificial sweetener, but does have plenty of nutritional value to help with a craving)
- Chewing gum
Each of these items is naturally sweet and can help you get over a craving. Remember to give your taste buds time to recalibrate because these items are much less sweet than straight sugar or other sweeteners.
Give yourself a couple of weeks to adjust: a small sacrifice for a much healthier future.
Mohan Garikiparithi holds a degree in medicine from Osmania University (University of Health Sciences). He practiced clinical medicine for over a decade. During a three-year communications program in Germany, he developed an interest in German medicine (homeopathy) and other alternative systems of medicine. This article was originally published on Bel Marra Health.